Intergenerational equality means that every generation is guaranteed preconditions which are at least on the same level as they were for the previous generation. A prerequisite for this is equity within a generation.
According to a health study carried out by the FSHS students suffer from a great deal of mental health problems. The number of students diagnosed with depression and anxiety disorders has increased considerably since 2000. Out of the participants in the study, 30% said that they face mental health difficulties. One third of students feel a lot of stress. Women were more likely to suffer from study-related exhaustion than men.
According to studies, this is not a time that encourages young people to start a family. In the debate on combining a career and a family the costs for the government and employers and the aim to maximise careers in emphasised. Many intellectual and emotional demands are placed on the student generation: shortening their studies and the time spent caring for children at home, finding demanding careers and increasing the length of their careers. The importance of close relationships as a force that carries people through life seems to have been forgotten.
Väestöliitto’s standpoint on starting a family is that every adult should have the opportunity to achieve their hopes relating to children, i.e. have the number of children they want. Living alone or as a childfree couple is just as acceptable.
The important part of family policy is long-term support of a reasonable quality. One concrete action for consistent family policy would be to fix the cuts to student financial aid by introducing a care supplement to the student financial aid. This would also signal the acceptance of society for the brave choice that some young people make to have children during their studies.